MUMBAI: Acting on expected lines, FIFA on Saturday postponed the U-17 Women's World Cup, which was scheduled to be held in India in November, due to the worsening COVID-19 pandemic.
The women's age group showpiece was to be held at five venues in the country from November 2-21.
The decision was taken by the FIFA-Confederations working group, which was recently established by the Bureau of the FIFA Council to address the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, and which includes the FIFA administration and secretary generals and top executives from all confederations.
The working group unanimously approved a series of recommendations following its first meeting, which was organised via conference call Saturday.
Concerning FIFA competitions:
To postpone the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Panama/Costa Rica 2020 - originally scheduled for August/September 2020 - and the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup India 2020 - originally scheduled for November 2020. New dates will be identified; and
To agree that a decision concerning the FIFA Futsal World Cup Lithuania 2020 - scheduled for September 2020 - shall be made by the end of April 2020, and dates for a potential postponement shall already be considered.
Concerning the postponed Men’s Olympic Football Tournament (preliminary and final competitions of the tournament):
To keep the eligibility criteria originally foreseen (players born on or after 01.01.1997 and three additional players).
Concerning football regulatory matters:
To support the work of the FIFA-led task force on transfer matters (composed of all key football stakeholders – confederations, member associations, leagues, clubs and players) in order for guidelines and recommendations to be issued as soon as possible.
Concerning the men’s international match calendar:
To postpone all international matches due to be played during the upcoming June 2020 window; and
To organise bilateral discussions with confederations concerning 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers in order to finalise a revised match schedule pending health and safety developments.
Concerning the women’s international match calendar:
To postpone all international matches due to be played during the upcoming June 2020 window;
To include the new dates of the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament in the women’s international match calendar; and
To create a sub-working group on the women’s international match calendar to consider potential changes to the calendar and dates of postponed FIFA final tournaments.
Creation of a global support fund for football:
To appoint one person per confederation to coordinate on this topic together with FIFA, with the working group being kept informed of developments.
The working group will continue to hold discussions on a regular basis as the situation evolves.
Over 50,000 deaths have been caused by the deadly outbreak thus far.